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Old 12-01-2014, 11:33 AM   #1
DouglasPHill
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Series's that were "re-tooled" after season one and then died.

Harry's Law, and Human Target are prime examples. I enjoyed both season one's of the shows and then someone decided to make changes and the shows died during season two.

What brings this up? Watching Transporter the series. Season one loved it. Just saw the first ep from season two. Maybe it will grow on me.
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Old 12-01-2014, 12:02 PM   #2
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Harry's Law, and Human Target are prime examples. I enjoyed both season one's of the shows and then someone decided to make changes and the shows died during season two.

What brings this up? Watching Transporter the series. Season one loved it. Just saw the first ep from season two. Maybe it will grow on me.
Re: Transporter - Yeah, I'm disappointed that they killed off Dieter and that Carla is gone. It's lost a good deal of its appeal for me. Maybe Dieter's twin brother will show up. Frank needs someone to fix his cars.

Human Target is a good example... the first season was watchable, the second dropped off my Season Pass list pretty quickly.

I can't think of any other series where this happened between the first and second seasons.
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Old 12-01-2014, 12:21 PM   #3
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Dark Angel... very entertaining first season, miserable second season and cancelled.
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Old 12-01-2014, 12:49 PM   #4
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The 1988 War of the Worlds, huge shift in the show from S01 to S02, then it was gone.

I actually came into the thread to suggest Human Target as a prime example but congrats on the OP mentioning it
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:03 PM   #5
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The Gil Gerard-Erin Gray version of "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century" was all post-nuclear war, Earth-based in season 1, with Pamela Hensley's Princess Ardala as the main antagonist, and then all of a sudden, season 2 took place on some kind of starship traveling through space. Even the robot sounded different.

If you count "Galactica 1980" as a re-tooling of the original "Battlestar Galactica," then that would be another good example, although I suppose it's better characterized as a spin-off.

***

On the flip side, one of the few examples of a successful re-tool was "JAG," which started on NBC with Andrea Parker (later, Miss Parker on "The Pretender") as the co-star in the pilot, to be replaced by Tracey Needham in season 1. NBC did not renew "JAG," but then CBS swooped in to save it from cancellation. Season 2 debuted in the mid-season, but Needham was gone, with Catherine Bell joining the cast as Sarah MacKenzie, and with previous guest stars John Jackson and Patrick Labyorteaux getting promoted to regulars. Good moves, as it lasted nine more seasons!
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:16 PM   #6
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Usually when a show is re-tooled for a second season, it means it was poorly rated and on the verge of cancellation and the changes were made as a condition of the network agreeing to order another season. So while you may not like the re-tooling, in almost all cases, it was either that or no more episodes at all. The fact that most of these re-tooled shows don't survive to season 3 has little to do with the re-tooling and much more to do with the fact that hardly anyone was watching in the first place.
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:33 PM   #7
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"Breaking In," a Christian Slater series on FOX, was a relatively recent example. Now, granted, as Devdog points out, it wasn't exactly a ratings winner, but the retooling just made it nearly unwatchable for the second season.
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:40 PM   #8
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Usually when a show is re-tooled for a second season, it means it was poorly rated and on the verge of cancellation and the changes were made as a condition of the network agreeing to order another season. So while you may not like the re-tooling, in almost all cases, it was either that or no more episodes at all. The fact that most of these re-tooled shows don't survive to season 3 has little to do with the re-tooling and much more to do with the fact that hardly anyone was watching in the first place.
The problem is, when they make major changes to a show, they're likely to lose their existing viewers. Both of them!
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:43 PM   #9
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Season 1 was very cerebral and somewhat mystical, season 2 was an action show. Two characters were eliminated and two new characters introduced.
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:55 PM   #10
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Boomtown.
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Old 12-01-2014, 02:03 PM   #11
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Anyone remember "Grapevine?" Six episodes in 1992 and brought back in 2000 for five.
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Old 12-01-2014, 03:50 PM   #12
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Series's that were "re-tooled" after season one and then died.
"Series's"? Really? LOL!
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Old 12-01-2014, 03:54 PM   #13
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Dragnet w/Ed O'Neill. I was one of the few that really liked it in S1. Then they changed it up and nobody liked S2.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:02 PM   #14
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There's always "War of the Worlds". Although almost nobody watched the first season - even fewer watched the second...
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:06 PM   #15
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Boomtown.
A shame, that one. Fantastic show. I wonder if it would do better today on a network like FX. It was ahead of its time.

Neal McDonough will always be David McNorris to me.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:14 PM   #16
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There's always "War of the Worlds". Although almost nobody watched the first season - even fewer watched the second...
I enjoyed War of the Worlds. And yes the 1st season was better. But I'm one of those who stuck it out till the end.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:25 PM   #17
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I can't believe no one has mentioned "Bob", the third of the self-titled Bob Newhart shows.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:28 PM   #18
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... The fact that most of these re-tooled shows don't survive to season 3 ...
My guess is that is not a fact, that more retooled shows make it to a season three than do not.

The effort to retool may indicate an underlying unusual committment to make an unpopular show work, or the retooling may be to an adequately-performing show with concept or personnel issues, e.g. Mission Impossible, Mannix, Life of Riley, etc.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:30 PM   #19
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Dragnet w/Ed O'Neill. I was one of the few that really liked it in S1. Then they changed it up and nobody liked S2.
One of the few Dick Wolfe failures, I'm still disappointed it's not on DVD, I'd buy it to rewatch.

If you liked it you might want to look for Big Apple, same time frame also with Ed O'Neil as a NYC cop, chock full of awesome supporting actors.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:38 PM   #20
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I can't believe no one has mentioned "Bob", the third of the self-titled Bob Newhart shows.
BTW the retooling of "Newhart" (I would call switching from tape to film a major change, certainly a huge change in look at that time) is an example of many successful ones.

Also BTW, there were four.
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:48 PM   #21
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I can think of a few retoolings, but I think they all took place in midseason:

Tattinger's was an hour-long drama which was turned into the half-hour sitcom Nick & Hillary. This may be the only one where the change was made between seasons.

The Powers of Matthew Star got rid of Matthew's girlfriend (played by Amy Steele, who I think left to do For Love & Honor) and became much more of a science fiction series.

A few other shows were retooled and changed their name, to no avail:
Together We Stand became Nothing is Easy
Spencer became Under One Roof
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Old 12-01-2014, 05:01 PM   #22
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Harry's Law, and Human Target are prime examples. I enjoyed both season one's of the shows and then someone decided to make changes and the shows died during season two.
Totally agree on Harry's Law. The first season was interesting and quirky, with the small law office in a shoe store..

The second season, they were conveniently moved upstairs from the shoe store, into a large law office... And it became just another run-of-the-mill law show. Nothing special. My SP was deleted shortly into season 2.
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Old 12-01-2014, 07:46 PM   #23
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The Powers of Matthew Star got rid of Matthew's girlfriend (played by Amy Steele, who I think left to do For Love & Honor) and became much more of a science fiction series.
The odd thing was that he became a government agent.

The Single Guy got retooled for Season 2 but it was still considered a failure for losing too much of the Friends lead in even though it's numbers were respectable.


For some unfathomable reason, ABC decided that Mork and Mindy needed retooling between Seasons 1 and 2 and got rid of Mindy's father and grandmother and instead brought in Jay Thomas and Gina Hecht to play siblings running a deli.

This combined with moving the show opposite All in the Family caused the ratings to fall and Thomas and Hecht were gone by Season 3.
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Old 12-01-2014, 07:54 PM   #24
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Then there was Seinfeld. It had such promise in the first season. Then, they revamped it, and it just limped along for another eight years until they finally gave up on it.
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:13 PM   #25
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"These Friends of Mine" became "Ellen" with pretty much the entire cast replaced except for Ellen for S02.
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:28 PM   #26
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My mind might be playing tricks on me, but Earth: Final Conflict appeared to change direction after the 1st season, and lost my attention from then on.
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:47 PM   #27
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Then there was Seinfeld. It had such promise in the first season. Then, they revamped it, and it just limped along for another eight years until they finally gave up on it.
so much nothing!!!
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:57 PM   #28
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Grey's Anatomy took on a very different feel after S1 and became dead to me...
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Old 12-01-2014, 09:00 PM   #29
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My mind might be playing tricks on me, but Earth: Final Conflict appeared to change direction after the 1st season, and lost my attention from then on.
Could you be thinking of Andromeda instead? I know after season 1, Kevin Sorbo started throwing his weight around, and I believe was part of the reason that Robert Hewitt Wolfe left the show. It stopped being an ensemble and started being the Kevin Sorbo show.
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Old 12-01-2014, 09:10 PM   #30
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It was Earth: Final Conflict, the lead character (William Boone, played by Kevin Kilner) was replaced in the second season, along with the tone of the show.
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